Nova Scotia has 21 known active cases of COVID-19, with six new cases (four in the Central Zone, two in the Western) reported in the latest government update. So far, the pandemic has killed 66 people in the province.

Nova Scotian labs completed 1,585 tests on March 20 and 279,045 since the second wave of the pandemic began in October.

“Until the majority of Nova Scotians have received their first dose of vaccine, and we have a high level of protection from the virus, we need to keep following public health protocols,” Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, says in a press release.

On Friday, Strang joined Premier Iain Rankin to announce that the government is opening the provincial border with New Brunswick, and easing public-health restrictions across Nova Scotia.

“We look forward to reopening the entire Atlantic bubble but in the meantime, with case numbers declining, we are comfortable opening the New Brunswick border,” Premier Rankin says in a press release. “We know many businesses and families need to cross this border frequently and we don’t want to delay their return to normal travel routines.”

Like residents of P.E.I., New Brunswickers no longer have to self-isolate upon arrival in Nova Scotia, nor complete the Safe Check-in form. People from Newfoundland and Labrador must still follow those requirements. Gathering limits for families and events have also changed. Get details here.

Dr. Gaynor Watson-Creed.

Dr. Gaynor Watson-Creed follows her conscience
Working as Dr. Strang’s deputy, Dr. Gaynor Watson-Creed has been key to shaping Nova Scotia’s COVID-19 response, and now she’s leaving her public health job, heading to Dalhousie University’s medical school for a new challenge.

She will head up a portfolio that promotes public health as a career path and examines inequities in the health and well-being of long-marginalized communities, including the region’s Black, Indigenous, and immigrant populations, as well as the LGBTQ community, rural areas, and seniors.

“Nova Scotians are no strangers to the issues on race relations, both anti-Black racism and anti-Indigenous racism,” says Watson-Creed. “All of the events of 2020 have really brought a laser focus to the need for that work. Even the past three months has just been insane in terms of the demand for content related to anti-oppression and the faculty’s appetite for looking at their curriculum differently.”

Janet Whitman reports for Halifax Magazine.

RCMP investigate house fire
Guysborough District RCMP are looking for clues after fire destroyed an unoccupied house on Reddys Hill Road in Boylston just before midnight on March 17. Police say the fire was suspicious and would like anyone who knows anything to contact them.

The Reporter has details.

Kris Sonntag. Photo: George Klass

Artist celebrates youthful joy
With her current exhibition at Art 1274 Hollis in Halifax, North Shore artist Kris Sonntag spotlights the energy and liveliness of youth.

“My show, It’s a Kids’ Thing, features the activities of Canadian children throughout the four seasons,” she says. “I want my art to take people to a positive space, a place that reminds them of the good times.”

She tells Peter Martyn about it in this new story for The Light.

War Amps keeps reaching kids
Throughout the pandemic, Wars Amps has kept working to bring its safety-first message to kids and has even found opportunities to broaden the organization’s reach. In Nova Scotia, that means many children have seen virtual presentations from spokesman Bob Maguire.

“The response has been incredible,” he says. “It’s nice to be able to get into pockets or rural areas we might not normally get to.”

Raissa Tetanish interviews him for Hub Now.

Need to know
Know a community group, good cause, or inspiring local story we should share? Email the editor.

Halifax Magazine